How BlackBerry rebranded by switching focus from B2C to B2B

Last updated:

Last week, BlackBerry’s senior VP for marketing, Mark Wilson, and Gyro’s CEO and Chief Creative Officer, Christoph Becker, made a joint presentation at BMA15.

The presentation was a case study about the challenges both have to encounter and the rebranding effort since last year.

Wilson said that since the company was on a losing streak with its focus on business to consumer, it was not a sustainable tactics. Therefore, there was a need to shift the focus dramatically in the last one and half years.

The SVP said that along with Gyro, the company was able to regain B2B market in the smartphone that it once dominated through a sustained campaign around the BlackBerry Passport launch. The model’s sole target was business professionals.

Wilson said that its campaign yielded favorable results in the first week of the launch by selling more than 200,000 devices. The campaign video illustrated the competitive smartphones as toys and not a serious business tool.

Its campaign, ‘Work Wide,’ captured the attention of the serious business tools with security offering, connectivity through the Internet of Things and mobility.

In an interview with the Advertising Age, Wilson said that its turnaround plan revolved around a two-year period and reached the current position in about a year.

As far as turnaround measurement, he said it was about margins and revenue. In the last two quarters, BlackBerry generated a profit compared to suffering losses in the preceding year period. He cited Net Promoter Score (NPS) as another way of measuring. Accordingly, Passport enjoys the highest NPS in the company’s history.

Wilson reiterated that Security and privacy continue to be a core focus for the company, as well as what they’re doing with the internet of things, software and services.

Meanwhile Becker stated that repairing BlackBerry’s image is a primary focus:

Our job is to regain pride for BlackBerry inside the company and among its core audience of power professionals.

We want to make the message as relevant as possible to the target audience. So we are using online, mobile, sponsorships, events, looking at how we can do all this without a huge budget.